Bored Panda works better on our iPhone app
Continue in app Continue in browser

BoredPanda Add post form topAdd Post
Tooltip close

The Bored Panda iOS app is live! Fight boredom with iPhones and iPads here.

Man’s Life Is Ruined After He Hits His 8 Y.O. Niece, Years Later His Daughter Can’t Let It Go
57

Man’s Life Is Ruined After He Hits His 8 Y.O. Niece, Years Later His Daughter Can’t Let It Go

Interview With Expert
ADVERTISEMENT

We all know what a terrible thing abuse is. It not only damages a person’s body and overall health, but it creates mental scars too. And the thing about one’s mental health is that sometimes it likes to trick people. For example, convince them that something bad that’s happening to them, like abuse, isn’t so bad. And sometimes, even years later, they still can’t shake off this way of thinking.

A woman from today’s story is a perfect example of that – her dad used to abuse her, but she seems to underestimate his wrongdoings and blames her cousin for the way her abuser’s life turned out.

More info: Reddit

Sadly, physical abuse does not only leave physical scars, but mental ones too

Image credits: David Hinkle (not the actual photo) 

Back in the day, when the author was still a child, they were hit by their cousin’s dad

They told this to their parents, who made sure to exclude the cousin’s dad from the whole family for good

Image credits: yang miao (not the actual photo) 

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Ever since, the uncle’s life has been miserable and the cousin keeps blaming the author for it

Image credits: Kelly Sikkema (not the actual photo) 

ADVERTISEMENT

Image credits: u/SellAppropriate8199

One day, the author lost it and harshly told their cousin that they don’t regret “ruining” her abusive dad’s life

The post author’s aunt used to be married to a guy called John, and together they had a daughter Abby. John was hated by the whole OP’s family, as he had a bad temper, was aggressive, and not to mention a drunk. 

Bored Panda reached out to a counselor and therapist Lia Huynh (check out her YouTube channel!) and family therapist Dr. Jane Greer to talk a little bit more about aggressive and abusive parents. 

Lia said that there are a lot of different signs that parents are abusive towards children since abuse can not only be violent, but emotional, sexual, or simply in a form of neglect. Dr. Greer said, “Recognizing signs of child abuse and neglect is crucial for early intervention and protection.” 

Since today we’re largely talking about physical abuse, both our interviewees distinguished that typically there are signs that might suggest that the kids are getting physically abused. 

Lia voiced that a sign could be a child having bruises, cuts, and any other kinds of injuries that occur frequently without an explanation and are in various stages of healing, which would suggest that the trauma has been repeated. Also, they might be hiding injuries and refusing or being hesitant to get medical care. 

Dr. Jane Greer agreed with these signs and added that physical neglect might also manifest in things such as an unkempt appearance, dirty clothes, and bulky clothing concealing the wounds even in warm weather. Also, a kid bullying others at school can suggest that they are imitating abusive behaviors experienced at home

ADVERTISEMENT

Coming back to the story, one day, when the OP was around 8 years old, they were a guest at their aunt’s house and playing with their cousin. At some point during the day, John came back from work and went to sleep. But he didn’t sleep for long. The post author guesses that they and Abby were making too much noise, which made John storm into the room, scream at them, and hit both of the kids. 

The OP’s scream brought the aunt into the room. When John left the room, she comforted the kids and asked them to not tell their mom about what just happened. She even bribed them with money and ice cream. The author agreed not to tell, accepting the bribe, but later on they still called their dad to tell him about what had happened. 

20 minutes later, the dad showed up and soon John ended up in the hospital. And not only that – it was also made clear that the man was no longer welcome in the family and the aunt was urged to leave him. And she did. After that, John’s life kind of fell apart and he became an inconsistent force in Abby’s life. 

Now, years later, Abby still blames the OP for ruining her family. In her eyes, if they wouldn’t have said anything, maybe things wouldn’t have fallen apart. Anyway, apparently Abby can’t stop talking about this, she always makes sure to remark that due to the post author, she doesn’t have a stable dad anymore. Even the family members urging her to let it go never seems to work. 

ADVERTISEMENT

One might argue that Abby in a way suffers from Stockholm syndrome, which is a psychological response to being held captive or getting abused (clearly, in this case, the latter reason.) People with this syndrome over time develop positive feelings toward their captors or abusers. After all, this woman seems to brush off all of her dad’s violent behavior. 

Image credits: Liza Summer (not the actual photo) 

Dr. Greer said that when a victim of abuse or captivity develops a Stockholm syndrome, it is to minimize and negate the terror associated with their abuse or captivity: “By aligning themselves with the captor, they may feel a sense of control in an otherwise uncontrollable environment. This bonding mechanism serves as a coping strategy to diminish fear and perceive themselves as being in less danger.”  

Lia Huynh agreed with this sentiment and also listed several other ways how Stockholm syndrome can apply to abusive parent-children relationships: 

  • Children are dependent on their parents for love and survival, so they might rationalize and minimize the abuse to maintain the relationship; 
  • Sometimes, children simply don’t understand how and why the abuse is bad;
  • An abuser might gaslight a child into believing they deserve the abuse. 

One of the incidents of Abby blaming the OP happened during Easter dinner. But this time, the author couldn’t take all the whining and so they just lost it. They told Abby that they were not even the slightest bit sorry about what happened to her dad. After all, he was an abusive dude and even if she was OK with him hitting her, she shouldn’t have been. This made Abby break down and the OP was told they went overboard by some of the family members. So, they decided to come on Reddit to ask for netizens’ opinions on whether they really went overboard. 

ADVERTISEMENT

The netizens made it clear that they don’t think that the post’s author went overboard. They not only clarified this, but they also reassured the author that they shouldn’t feel like they had a big deal in Abby’s family falling apart, just as they don’t feel guilty about John’s life getting ruined. After all, the OP wasn’t even an adult when they were hit and told about it, and even if they were, still the blame falls on the abuser. 

Some of the people in the comments wondered if Abby had undergone any therapy to address the issues she has, to which the author answered that to their knowledge she hadn’t. Well, it’s pretty clear that she needs to get on the path of healing from it all, right? 

As Lia Huynh said, the person who suffered abuse in childhood needs to learn to let go of rationalizations and the denial of what happened, they need to face the reality and pain of the abuse, even if means wrestling with the fact that a person, who was supposed to unconditionally love them abused them: “Oftentimes, this is very hard to process because the dichotomy is so confusing and the cognitive dissonance is so intense.” 

So, let’s just hope that one day Abby will get help with dealing with her emotions regarding her dad and her cousin, as her current state is causing quite a rift in her family. After all, it’s pretty clear that the physical wounds from John’s abuse back in the day have healed, but the emotional ones are still quite raw.

Some of the family members thought the author went too far by saying that, but netizens assured them that it was a completely right thing to say

Poll icon

Poll Question

Thanks! Check out the results:

You May Also Like

Woman Refuses To Chip In For Babysitting Because She Doesn’t Even Have Kids, Asks If She’s A Jerk

Do you think childless individuals should be expected to chip in for group babysitting costs during friend gatherings?

Take the Poll

17 Y.O. Is Done Sharing Her Birthday With Her Late Twin, Parents Are Not Having It

Do you think the girl should be allowed to celebrate her birthday without the remembrance of her deceased twin?

Take the Poll
Share on Facebook
Related on Bored Panda
What do you think ?
Add photo comments
POST
laura_ketteridge avatar
arthbach
Community Member
1 month ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Abby is viewing this with the understanding of a child, nor the adult she has grown into. The family was torn apart because of her father's actions. He is the villain of the piece. Her cousin's visit was the flashpoint, but the cousin is not the reason her parents split up. Someone really needs to sit her down and explain this to her. A boundary also needs to be drawn regarding her complaints at family gathering. She is most welcome, but her erroneous complaints are not.

gfbarros avatar
Joey Jo Jo Shabadoo
Community Member
1 month ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Im sure Abby resents her family for not protecting her but rallying for the OP. And I kinda get it. But the OP 100% does not deserve to be blamed or harrassed for it.

Load More Replies...
ginshunray avatar
ginshun
Community Member
1 month ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Abby is a sad sad person who needs some counseling. You did nothing wrong. A person can only take so much.

omboyganesh avatar
ॐBoyGanesh
Community Member
1 month ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

This was my first thought. She’s internalized so much trauma & doesn’t know what to do with it. However, that she threw a fit & broke or thrashed or whatever, her plate & glass. That’s more of an emotional impulse control issue and added to the way she’s been presenting her childhood trauma speaks more to a personality disorder. She needs a therapist for her PTS/trauma. She needs a psychiatrist & treatment for the way her behavior is physically aggressive.

Load More Replies...
szaszi-uto-zoltan avatar
Szzone
Community Member
1 month ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

OP, Grandpa and stepbro are right. Abby needs to go to therapy and realize her dad was trash, she is an abuse victim, and she's perpetuating the cycle of abuse by gaslighting OP on his behalf. The rest of the fam need to realize OP has been putting up with this gaslighting and microagressions for years. End of story.

Load More Comments
laura_ketteridge avatar
arthbach
Community Member
1 month ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Abby is viewing this with the understanding of a child, nor the adult she has grown into. The family was torn apart because of her father's actions. He is the villain of the piece. Her cousin's visit was the flashpoint, but the cousin is not the reason her parents split up. Someone really needs to sit her down and explain this to her. A boundary also needs to be drawn regarding her complaints at family gathering. She is most welcome, but her erroneous complaints are not.

gfbarros avatar
Joey Jo Jo Shabadoo
Community Member
1 month ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Im sure Abby resents her family for not protecting her but rallying for the OP. And I kinda get it. But the OP 100% does not deserve to be blamed or harrassed for it.

Load More Replies...
ginshunray avatar
ginshun
Community Member
1 month ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Abby is a sad sad person who needs some counseling. You did nothing wrong. A person can only take so much.

omboyganesh avatar
ॐBoyGanesh
Community Member
1 month ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

This was my first thought. She’s internalized so much trauma & doesn’t know what to do with it. However, that she threw a fit & broke or thrashed or whatever, her plate & glass. That’s more of an emotional impulse control issue and added to the way she’s been presenting her childhood trauma speaks more to a personality disorder. She needs a therapist for her PTS/trauma. She needs a psychiatrist & treatment for the way her behavior is physically aggressive.

Load More Replies...
szaszi-uto-zoltan avatar
Szzone
Community Member
1 month ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

OP, Grandpa and stepbro are right. Abby needs to go to therapy and realize her dad was trash, she is an abuse victim, and she's perpetuating the cycle of abuse by gaslighting OP on his behalf. The rest of the fam need to realize OP has been putting up with this gaslighting and microagressions for years. End of story.

Load More Comments
Related on Bored Panda
Trending on Bored Panda
Also on Bored Panda